Snack Size Science: Fishing for powdered omega-3 salts

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Omega-3 fatty acid, Nutrition

NutraIngredients’ Snack Size Science brings you the week's top science. This week we explore the potential of powdered omega-3 salts as a way of taking this big fish of the nutrition world into yet more products.

The following is a transcript of this podcast:

This is NutraIngredients’ Snack Size Science​. I’m Stephen Daniells - bringing you the week’s top science in digestible amounts.

This week we see how swimming against the omega-3 stream can lead to innovations with fish oils.

Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the nutrition industries big fish with demand continuing to rise. Projections by Frost & Sullivan set annual growth at an impressive 24 per cent, and the market will be reeling in an estimated $1.6bn by 2014.

Ocean Nutrition Canada has been one of the leaders in the field, and the company continues to keep its scientists busy in their labs. ONC boffins recently reported the development of powdered omega-3 salts, said to be equally bioavailable as traditional liquid fish oil.

According to findings published in the Journal of Functional Foods​ the powdered salts may offer some advantages over the liquid oil capsules, including better stability, tolerability, and a lower cost. The salts could even allow other dry ingredients like vitamins and minerals to be included in the mix.

Using calcium oxide and magnesium chloride, the ONC scientists produced calcium and magnesium salts. Bioavailability tests with mice showed similar performance for the salts and the traditional oils. In addition, the salts were associated with a tendency for less omega-3 excretion, said the researchers.

The company confirmed that they have patents pending in this field, and we’ll just have to wait and see if these new omega-3 ingredients sink or swim.

For NutraIngredients’ Snack Size Science, I’m Stephen Daniells.

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